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World Health Organization officials are holding a press conference Friday to update the public on the coronavirus outbreak, which has infected more than 76,700 and killed at least 2,251 so far.
Named COVID-19, the virus has shuttered commerce across much of China and is hitting company earnings, global stock markets and manufacturing across the world.
WHO officials declared the virus a global health emergency last month, while urging the public against over-reacting to the virus. However, the COVID-19 epidemic in China has not yet met world health officials' designation of a global pandemic that spreads far and wide throughout the world. While it has spread to more than two dozen countries, international health officials say there's little transmission on local levels outside of China right now. They have warned that could quickly change.
On Friday, Iran's Health Ministry reported 13 new cases, which brings total in the country to 18, including four deaths. Iranian health official Minou Mohrez said Friday it's possible the virus has already spread to every Iranian city, according to Reuters.
"Based on existing reports, the spread of the coronavirus started in Qom and with attention to people's travels has now reached several cities in the country, including Tehran, Babol, Arak, Isfahan, Rasht, and other cities. And it is possible that it exists in all cities in Iran," he said.
In South Korea, cases nearly doubled overnight, surpassing 200. The Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Friday that most of the new cases came from the city of Daegu, with many linked to a possible outbreak at Sincheon Daegu Church. South Korean health officials have now confirmed 204 cases in the country.
A hospital in Beirut confirmed Lebanon's first case of the virus, Reuters reported, and an infected traveler from Iran brought the virus to Israel.